Level 41
rating: +36+x


SURVIVAL DIFFICULTY:

Class E

  • Unsecure
  • Hostile Environment
  • Low Entity Count
215plank.jpg

A dead-end platform that follows directly to Level 41's boiling tar pits.

Description

Level 41 is a bubbling, oozing, and flaming asphalt tar pit surrounded by charcoal black deserts, held in a perpetual greying fog that masks most of the environment. Its tar, despite having been sitting in place for presumably hundreds, if not thousands of years,1 never loses any heat, nor does it ever lose any of its intense reactivity with the air.

Acting as if it is fresh, the tar boils at a consistent 95 °C,2 with this high temperature—coupled with the pungent and intoxicating fumes—being quick to intoxicate wanderers who arrive at this level. Elongated proximity to this tar can frequently lead to fainting, illness, or vomiting from any combination of the two effects. Furthermore, physical touch with this tar, even without direct skin contact, can cause burns and boils to quickly accumulate on one's flesh. Prolonged physical proximity, especially for any time over a second, can cause skin and flesh to melt, graft to other material, or even become fused with the surface layer of the tar itself.

215sunken.jpg

A concrete pier that progressively sunk into the tar, pictured here in an almost completely submerged state.

The depth of the tar itself is remarkably shallow, which allows for the geography of hot, charcoal coloured sands to periodically pierce through the surface of the tar and form small, patchy islands in various, spread out clusters. The sand of these land masses are exponentially hot, and should not be stood on whilst stationary for long periods of time. Whilst these sands possess no other details, save for occasional animal bones or the dried and withered sticks of long dead bushes, they are imperative for survival, as they are only one of two safe methods of traversing Level 41, the other of which being the piers.

For a more safe way of travel across the tar pit, individuals can instead walk along the various bridges and piers that are raised above—or often times sunken within—the tar. The supports of these bridges are made of concrete or metal, with a wooden construction that makes up the rest of the legs, as well as the walkway areas. These walkways do not connect to the islands directly, as the platforms are elevated to heights anywhere from 2 to 6 metres from ground level.3 Overtime, some of the more dry wood in select boardwalks has caught fire from bubbles erupting within the tar, which has caused a vast amount of these platforms to catch on fire and leave nothing but their concrete supporting beams.

The sandy ground beneath the tar is often known to give way, akin to quicksand. This causes certain platforms to begin to sink into the tar until they completely submerged, and subsequently burn when the wood reaches the tar's surface.4 These fires, albeit rarely, can spread to other wooden constructs in the level, occasionally creating mass fires within the lake that can even spread across the entire surface layer of the tar.

As a final note, other constructs that can appear submerged within the tar are as follows:5

  • Telegraph poles;
  • Small power pylons;
  • Tiled roofs of, what can presumed to be, bungalows;
  • Metal rods;
  • Flat roofs of brick townhouses;
  • Other anomalous objects.6
215wide.jpg

An array of burned supports partially sunken into the tar, along with telegraph poles and an isolated boardwalk platform.

Traversal across Level 41 is incredibly difficult, and individuals who survive its boiling tar and intoxicating fumes will usually exit the level with burn marks, cuts, or charred soles of their shoes. In fact, many unfortunate travellers who wind up at Level 41 often get marooned on small islands that are so disconnected from other landmasses, boardwalks, or level exits that they inevitably dehydrate or become poisoned by the tar's fumes. Despite these failures and unfortunate happenings, however, successful expeditions across this level have been previously accomplished by other groups, which is what has brought much of the currently known information to light.

However, despite all that has been understood about this level, one looming mystery still overlooks the entirety of all currently written documentation. Surrounding the circular lake rests tall, sandy dunes that extend upwards for approximately fifteen metres before presumably tapering down the other side and going out of sight. Despite efforts, it is impossible to reach anywhere closer than 50 metres of the dunes due to all traversable objects not existing at any distance beyond that figure.

As walking over the tar is impossible, and importing materials is just as impractical, the hopes of ever reaching these dunes has been deemed as impossible. From using telescopes and binoculars, what little can be gathered is these sands are just as barren as the islands, although it is believed that the higher up areas of the dunes contain living specimens of the deceased bushes found on the tar pit's islands. Despite this theorised sign of life, however, no other details can be extrapolated from the dunes, if there even is anything to extrapolate at all.

Bases, Outposts and Communities

215group.jpg

The submerged, metal remains of a former group inhabiting Level 41.

Although there are no known bases, outposts or communities on this level at this time, attempts to make bases have previously been tried by small groups not affiliated with any larger organisation. These groups, of which around ten are known to have existed within the past 50 years, would perch on larger islands and attempt to construct bridges to the more isolated islands in an attempt to save wanderers who end up on them when arriving at this level.

Not all groups were quite so selfless, with one group believed to have been established to harvest the copper wiring from the telegraph poles. However, in the end all groups succumbed to the inherent dangers of Level 41's boiling tar, its intoxicating fumes, and its lack of edible materials that make long-term habitation impossible. The remains of a select few of these groups still exist, although they easily blend in with remains of the level's natural boardwalks and submerged structures.

The Collagen Leviathans

215entity.jpg

A head of a collagen leviathan that came from Level 41, held in one of Level 222's display cases.

Although a relatively rare species, Level 41 is home to large, eel-like entities that reside within the tar. These creatures lack any form of flesh, muscle, skin, or other organs, and simply resemble partially fossilised bones which resemble an odd, three-way cross between a snake, eel, and salmon, and can range anywhere from 7-20 ft in length.

Most of their lives are spent deep within the tar, and are presumed to hibernate for extremely long periods of time within it. This hypothesis mainly stems from the fact that the tar very rarely has visible volume displacement, which would be something almost guaranteed to exist within it, given the tar's high viscosity, and the relatively small size of the tar pit itself. However, due to no groups having the tools necessary to record underneath the tar, the true behaviour of the Collagen Leviathans when underneath the tar is not, and most likely never will be, known.

When not hibernating,7 these creatures are known to suddenly burst out from within the tar—an effect which does create visible volume displacement—and dive similar to dolphins. Although this is seemingly done for seemingly no apparent reason, other than the possibility of needing to cool down from being submerged in the tar for too long, the entities are known to inadvertently shower the substance of the lake across the level whenever they perform these arching dives, which has been known to maim wanderers, and even burn piers.

Despite lacking any bodily matter except a large, fossilised skeletal structure, these creatures are innately carnivorous, and oftentimes hunt wanderers. Through unknown means, given their lack of organs, collagen leviathans are able to "sense" a wanderer's nearby presence whenever they are either at the edges of an island or on a pier. Upon gaining awareness of the wanderer's nearby presence, they will jump out of the lake—similar to their usual and passive dives—and will grab the wanderer(s) within their jaws and subsequently burrow back within the tar.

It is unknown how (or even if) the Collagen Leviathans eat, nor if the hypothetical devouring is what kills its victims, or instead the smouldering tar. In fact, what happens with the victims moments after abduction are a complete mystery to this very day, as any screams from victims are immediately muffled upon submergence into the tar, and no victims had survived being snatched by collagen leviathans to recount any horrors.


Entrances And Exits

Entrances

  • Within Level 5's boiler rooms, tar can occasionally drip from the interconnected piping instead of almond water. Standing overhead these dripping tars will teleport oneself to Level 41.
  • Occasionally, Level 6's pitch black walls may feel slimy and gooey instead of their usual featureless, smooth texture. Getting too much of this substance on one's hands will trigger travel to this level.
    • The location of these anomalous walls are not locked to one set location, and seem to move from area to area whenever a wall is located by a wanderer.
  • Inside of Level 7's house, underneath the submerged carpet on the floor, is a crack in the floorboards filled with a half tar, half water substance. Interacting with this substance will bring one to Level 41.
  • Entering a singular tar pit on the island of Level 211 and fully submerging oneself within it will drop individuals into this level.
  • Following any of the rivers in Level 270 for long enough will eventually turn the rivers into a sickening black hue. Entering the rivers after this change occurs will cause individuals to end up here.
  • Noclipping through any tar covered or overly rotten trees that still possess leaves in Level 309 will place wanderers on this level.

Exits

To exit Level 41, individuals will have to find standout objects that are unique from the other submerged items within the tar. Only one of each of these objects exist within the lake, and some may not be accessible depending on where in the level one ends up. Regardless of that, however, the exits are as follows:

Level 500
  • Clambering inside the broken window of a submerged bridge for a USA navy vessel.
Level 515
  • Somehow getting oneself into the booster nozzles of an upside down, NASA space shuttle. Most of the shuttle in question is submerged within the tar, only leaving a slight portion of the fuel canisters, the boosters, and the booster nozzles in question. This makes access to them relatively easy.
Level 612
  • Finding an odd barn door on a stone plinth and going through it.
Level 626
  • Climbing into a submerged lighthouse gallery only partially held above the surface of the tar, then tampering with the functional, flickering beacon within it.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License